Minnesota lures Canadian firm to relocate in Maple Grove

  • Article by: ABBY SIMONS , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 19, 2013 - 8:59 PM
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Dec. 19, 2013: Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton, left, and Bruce Dorey, Senior Vice President of Strategy and Business Development for Price Industries.

Photo: Elizabeth Flores, Star Tribune

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Minnesota has successfully wooed a Canadian heating and ventilation company that will open a $2 million design center at what will become its U.S. headquarters in Maple Grove, Gov. Mark Dayton said Thursday.

Dayton had traveled on an undisclosed trip to Winnipeg over the summer on a mission to get Price Industries to relocate to Minnesota.

“We are pleased that Price chose Minnesota for an R&D facility that will bring new, good-paying jobs to the state,” Dayton said at a news conference. “I thank the company for committing to Minnesota, and we will work with them to ensure their long-term success in Maple Grove.”

Price was won over in part by a $700,000 grant from the Minnesota Investment Fund. The $30 million fund was created to help the state compete for manufacturing and high-tech jobs.

The company expects to employ 40 engineering and technical workers at the Maple Grove facility.

Bruce Dorey, the company’s senior vice president, said he expects 90 percent of the workers to come from Minnesota. The company was made grant offers by other states, some of them larger, Dorey said, but chose Minnesota in part because of its highly skilled workforce.

The company expects to begin hiring in February and open the facility in April.

An apology on MNsure

At Thursday’s news conference, Dayton also repeatedly declined to say whether he had specifically requested the resignation of former MNsure director April Todd-Malmlov, who stepped down from the troubled agency earlier this week.

Todd-Malmlov resigned from the $136,000-a-year post during an emergency session of the MNsure board on Tuesday night.

“In hindsight I apologize to those Minnesotans who were seriously inconvenienced or distraught by the failure of MNsure,” Dayton said. “It’s not acceptable and we’re going to do anything we can around-the-clock to correct that.”

Dayton said he remains confident that the program will reach its goals.

“We’ll get to the point where it’s functioning very efficiently,” he said. “I don’t know when that will be.”

ABBY SIMONS

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